25th June, 2006 SOSSA PELAGIC TRIP, WOLLONGONG, NSW, AUSTRALIA.
Report prepared by: P.J. Milburn.
Departed: 07:15 returned at approx. 16:00.
Sea conditions: slight WSW at first rising to 1.5 to 2.0m SSW by late morning.
Swell: SE 1.0 to 1.5m inshore and 1.5 to 2.0 m offshore.
Weather: Light high-level cloud at first increasing during the day.
Temperature range: 8.9 to 19.3°C.
Barometric pressure: 1018 HPa rising.
Wind: WSW 5 to 8 knots at first increasing to SSW 15 knots later.
Sea surface temperature: 18.1 to 21.8°C.
Primary chumming location: S 34° 30' - E 151° 19'.
A slow-moving anticyclone remained in the Great
Australian Bight and a weak low-pressure system
was located in the southwestern Tasman Sea. A
weak upper-level disturbance generated fresh
southwesterly breezes with increasing high cloud
forming during the day.
Unusually, Indic Yellow-nosed Albatross
outnumbered Black-browed Albatross in the shallow
water and, after an influx overnight, Hutton's
and Fluttering Shearwaters were present in almost
equal proportions. Fairy Prions were foraging
inside the 20-fathom line and we were soon being
shadowed by a mixed flock of Gibson's,
Black-browed, Campbell, SHY, White-capped and
Indic Yellow-nosed Albatross. The early
indications were that we would have another great
day of albatross watching.
Just inside the warmer water at the 60-fathom
line, we encountered 3 Southern Humpback Whales
heading north and as we were watching these the
first SOUTHERN GIANT-PETREL of the 2006 winter
season circled our vessel a couple of times.
Heading eastwards toward the continental slope
prions were all around us but all that offered
close inspection were Fairy Prions. We had to
venture into deeper water before we encountered
any petrels and even then they were few and far
between. We began a drift-and-berley session and
gradually began to attract some new birds. The
highlight of these was an adult BULLER'S
An ANTIPODEAN ALBATROSS and a nominate
Great-winged Petrel were late additions to the
trip list on our way back to port.
Brown Skua was a noticeable absentee following
higher than average numbers the previous day.
This was another interesting day at sea with 9
species of albatross being recorded and a total
of 16 species of procellariiformes identified.
We witnessed the first record for 2006 of the now
rather scarce SOUTHERN GIANT PETREL and another
stunning adult BULLER'S ALBATROSS.
Birds recorded according to the latest
Environment Australia Reporting Schedule:
Species code: Species name: Numbers:
(Note: numbers in parenthesis = highest count at any one time)
929 SOUTHERN GIANT-PETREL Macronectes giganteus 1
080 Cape Petrel Daption capense australe 5 (5)
075 Great-winged Petrel Pterodroma m. macroptera 1
971 Solander's Petrel P. solandri 3 (1)
083 Fairy Prion Pachyptila turtur 550+ (300+)
068 Fluttering Shearwater Puffinus gavia 60+ (45+)
913 Hutton's Shearwater P. huttoni 45+ (30+)
086 WANDERING ALBATROSS Diomedea exulans 3 (3)
846 ANTIPODEAN ALBATROSS D. antipodensis 2 (2)
847 Gibson's Albatross D. gibsoni 6 (3)
088 Black-browed Albatross Thalassarche melanophrys 40+ (20+)
859 Campbell Albatross T. impavida 5 (2)
931 BULLER'S ALBATROSS T. bulleri 1
861 SHY ALBATROSS T. cauta 3 (2)
861 White-capped Albatross T. steadi 9 (4)
864 Indic Yellow-nosed Albatross T. carteri 62 (25)
104 Australasian Gannet Morus serrator 18 (7)
099 Pied Cormorant Phalacrocorax varius 1
106 Australian Pelican Pelicanus conspicillatus 1
981 Kelp Gull Larus dominicanus 2 (2)
125 Silver Gull L. novaehollandiae 195+ (75+)
114 White-fronted Tern Sterna striata 2 (1)
115 Crested Tern S. bergii 7 (2)
In the harbour:
100 Little Pied Cormorant Phalacrocorax melanoleucos 1
106 Australian Pelican Pelicanus conspicillatus 3 (2)
115 Crested Tern Sterna bergii 2 (1)
23 species of seabird identified outside the breakwater.
Humpback Whale Megaptera novaeangliae 3 (3)
Striped Marlin Tetrapturus audax 1
For previous trip reports and selected images from this trip visit
All Pelagic Trips from NSW are operated at no
profit to the organizers, being operated as group
boat charters for the benefit of all who wish to
join us. If you would like to join one of these
trips please contact us as detailed below:
To make a booking on the SOSSA Wollongong Pelagic
Trips that departs on the 4th Saturday of each
SOSSA: Phone 02 4271 6004.
Carl Loves Phone: 0427 423 500
Pete Milburn: Mobile 0428 249 506, 02 6255 1313 (AH) or 02 6125 4173 (BH)
To make a booking for Sydney Pelagic Trip that
departs from Rose Bay public jetty on the 2nd
Saturday of each month contact
Tony Palliser Ph; 02-99001678 (w), 02-94115272 (h)
To make a booking for Eden Pelagic Trips, which
are run on the 5th Sunday of each month as it
Barbara Jones or Ph (02) 6495 7390
Note: SOSSA = Southern Oceans Seabird Study Association
Dr P.J. Milburn
ANU Biomolecular Resource Facility
John Curtin School of Medical Research
Australian National University
GPO Box 334
Canberra ACT 0200
'Phone +61 2 6125 4326
FAX +61 2 6125 9533
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